Confession is not difficult but it does require preparation.
We should begin with prayer, placing ourselves in the presence of God, our loving Father. We seek healing and forgiveness through repentance and a resolve to sin no more.
Then we should review our lives since our last confession, searching our thoughts, words, and actions for things that did not conform to God’s command to love him and one another through his laws and the laws of his Church.
This is called an examination of conscience.
To make an examination of conscience:
- Begin with a prayer asking for God’s help.
- Review your life with the help of some questions, which are based on the Ten Commandments (see next page).
- Tell God how truly sorry you are for your sins.
- Make a firm resolution not to sin again.
Rite of Reconciliation
Reconciliation may be face-to-face or anonymous, with a screen between you and the priest. Choose the option that is the most comfortable for you.
- The priest gives you a blessing or greeting. He may share a brief Scripture passage.
- Respond to the priests greeting and mention how long it has been since your last confession.
- Confess all of your sins to the priest. The priest will help you to make a good confession. If you are unsure about how to confess or you feel uneasy, just ask him to help you. Answer his questions without hiding anything out of fear or shame. Place your trust your priest.
- The priest assigns you a penance. Listen to what the priests says to you and listen to the priest’s words offering the Lord’s forgiveness.
- Thank the priest for his forgiveness.
Spend some time in prayer expressing your sorrow for your sins and complete your Penance.